More specifically, the board expects to spend more money than they will be taking in. However, McGinnis has said the money will not be poorly spent, rather it is things that are necessary to keep the school progressing toward future goals.
"It’s getting frustrating," McGinnis said when he presented his 2006 Draft Budget to the Trigg County Board of Education Thursday.
McGinnis cited problems at the state level that are largely the cause for the expected budget.
"We are tired of unfunded mandates the state is passing down," he said.
What he was referring to was a mandate issued by Governor Ernie Fletcher to raise the salary of teachers by 1 percent. According to McGinnis, this is something that the state has left to schools across the Commonwealth to deal with, meaning the state has not appropriated funding for the pay increase.
In his Draft Budget, McGinnis and Chief Financial Officer Linda Tribble have estimated that the school will spend almost a half-million dollars more than what they will be taking in as revenue. The estimate was $488,129.93.
The expense is largely centered around the hiring of new special education personnel by McGinnis. He said this is something that needed to be done due to the No Child Left Behind mandate signed into law by President Bush in 2002.
What the mandate requires is that all teachers be "highly qualified," meaning they teach the field they were originally certified to teach. In Trigg County’s case, McGinnis said that the special education teachers are certified in special education but not a typical field such as math or science. Therefore, he has been required to hire teachers that specialize in various subjects to be in the special education classrooms to meet the federal mandate.
This is expected to cost the school $250,000 in salaries.
Also, the state provided money known as the Support Education Excellence in Kentucky (SEEK) has decreased by over $100,000, causing the school to tighten its belt even more.
McGinnis has also put $100,000 on the budget to pay for new computers the district purchased. What they will need to do is update the operating system on some of these pieces of equipment because the state has mandated what operating system schools use, he said. The state has not allocated money for this, McGinnis said, putting even more strain on the pockets of Trigg County Schools.
At the end of this fiscal year the district is expected to have just over $1.9 million. By the end of next fiscal year, the district is expected to have just over $1.4 million.